The dinner party was splendid, and Ali's dress did not disappoint. My wife came in full bow tie and suspenders, and the dinner was delicious. We listened to the Born Ruffians, Peaches, the Marie Antoinette soundtrack and David Bowie, which was excellent, and everybody looked spectacular. The table was lit with candles and the room strung with garlands, and Leyla made chickpea rice, pasta salad with feta cheese, and eggplant wrapped around goat cheese and herbs. There was also a carrot lentil soup to start, and before that mini quiche and fig/goat cheese hors d'oeuvres. For dessert, Sarah, ever the exquisite baker, made chocolate... somethings (which melted in my mouth, although I have no idea what they're called), gingerbread cookies with cream cheese icing, and a chocolate cake with buttercream and candy cane icing. Extraordinary. With this, there was champagne, bad wine, good laughs and good friends. We exchanged presents as well, and I left feeling warm, happy, and full of Christmas spirit. Hopefully fabulous photos will emerge in the next couple of days, and I'll post them here. I hope you're all enjoying your festive gatherings as much as I am.

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